Szafnauer weighs in on Ocon-Gasly Australian GP crash debate

Otmar Szafnauer has had his say on the crash that saw Alpine finish the 2023 Australian GP out of the points

-

Alpine team boss Otmar Szafnauer has weighed in on the late collision between Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly that put both drivers in the wall with just two laps to go of a chaotic 2023 Australian Grand Prix.

Gasly was running fifth when Kevin Magnussen brought out the red flag on Lap 54, but the Frenchman lost places at the restart when he ran wide at Turn 1 before rejoining the track in front of his teammate.

Ocon nudged alongside Gasly on the outside but as the gap closed, the pair came together, bringing what had been a positive race to a sad end.

“I mean, look, it’s a shame that that they came together,” Szafnauer told the media after the 2023 Australian GP. “As far as trying to play one or the other, I don’t think that’s the right thing to do.

“I think the right thing to do is learn from it. But you know, there’s so much chaos there and you got to make quick decisions.

“If you look at the onboard and the replay, Tsunoda gets through and Esteban tries to follow him.

“You don’t know where Pierre’s gonna go. Pierre doesn’t know who’s there. So he’s just trying to get on the racing line.

“So it’s not like he’s looking in the mirror seeing somebody and saying, ‘Well, I’m gonna block them’.

“He’s looking the other way and gets on the racing line thinking no one’s there.”

Szafnauer: Guys behind should have lifted

Gasly was visibly dejected in the aftermath after turning in one of the performances of the day to mix it with the top five and keep Carlos Sainz and Fernando Alonso in his sights.

All his hard work was undone at the restart, but Szafnauer absolved his new recruit of blame, adding that a crash was hard to avoid in the melee as drivers scrapped for points.

“So if you look at it, what happens is, there’s cars, so Pierre rejoins and can’t accelerate with grass on his on his rear tyres,” Szafnauer said.

“So the acceleration isn’t as much as the acceleration of those behind him, and he’s got one car that goes past on the right, another one that’s trying to go past on the right, and another one that’s going past that on the left.

“So whatever you do, you’re gonna hit somebody. And, you know, when they’re trying to overtake you, if the guys behind lift and allow you to accelerate, you have no issues. But unfortunately, they don’t lift.”

Andrew Wright
Andrew Wrighthttps://total-motorsport.com
Sports Journalist for Total-Motorsport.com
- Advertisment -

LATEST NEWS

Max Verstappen in the Paddock ahead of the 2024 Chinese Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

F1 Betting Odds for Chinese GP 2024

0
As the Formula 1 circus rolls into Shanghai for the 2024 Chinese Grand Prix, betting odds are keenly watched...
Pierre Gasly of Red Bull Racing during practice for 2019 Chinese Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Chinese GP 2024 Weather: Latest forecast for F1 race in Shanghai

0
As Formula 1 teams gear up for the 2024 Chinese Grand Prix, all eyes are on the ever-changing weather...
Zhou Guanyu displays 2024 Chinese GP helmet

All the new F1 driver helmets for 2024 Chinese Grand Prix

0
Formula 1 finally returns to Shanghai for the first time since 2019 as the Chinese Grand Prix is back...
Daniel Ricciardo of Red Bull leads Kimi Raikkonen of Ferrari and the rest of the field at the start of the 2016 Chinese Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

F1 Chinese Grand Prix – Past Winners

0
The Chinese Grand Prix has showcased a series of spectacular races since its first race in 2004 at the...

Where to Watch F1 2024 Chinese GP on TV and Streaming

0
The 2024 Chinese Grand Prix is gearing up to be an electrifying event in the Formula 1 calendar, as...
The Chinese GP returned to the calendar in 2024 | Dan Istitene / Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Unpredictability and unknowns are the Chinese GP buzzwords

0
The Chinese Grand Prix is back for 2024 after five years away due the Covid-19 pandemic and it almost...
Race winner Max Verstappen, Second placed Sergio Perez and Third placed Carlos Sainz of Ferrari celebrate with Craig Dear, Principal Aerodynamicist at Red Bull Racing on the podium at 2024 Japanese Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Carlos Sainz fuels Red Bull talk as Ferrari star reveals ‘best options’

0
Ferrari driver Carlos Sainz has dropped a hint over which Formula 1 team he would like to join for...
The Chinese GP is held in Shanghai. F1/X

F1 stars voice safety fears as Chinese GP organisers face scrutiny over painted track

0
Organisers for the Formula 1 2024 Chinese Grand Prix are facing questions from F1 teams and drivers over their...
Alexander Albon of Williams during 2023 Canadian Grand Prix | Williams F1 Team

Alex Albon would rather ‘stay at home’ than avoid risks despite Williams chassis fears

0
The extent of the issues at Williams became apparent when they revealed they do not have the resources to...
Lando Norris navigates The Strip Circuit at the 2023 Las Vegas GP | McLaren F1 Team

Disheartened Lando Norris rules out any chance of an F1 race win soon

0
After the 2021 Russian Grand Prix, a Formula 1 win for Lando Norris felt like an eventual inevitability, but...
- Advertisment -